AYV Unveils Miss University 2018
Wednesday 5th September 2018, marked the introduction of a difference in the status of beauty pageant in Sierra Leone. The AYV Media Empire officially launched the AYV Miss University 2018 simultaneously with the AYV Charity Foundation at a ceremony held at the prestigious Sierra Palms Hotel at the Lumley Beach in Freetown.
AYV’s Director of Communications, Abdul Fonti, welcomed guests to the august meeting, giving a brief background to the event, he said the event is a brain child of the Media Empire’s CEO, Anthony Navo Jr. “With the exception of 2014 and 2015 when the Ebola virus plagued this country, the event had taken place during all the other years since 2011.”
“The AYV Miss University pageant has now assumed a national symbol” Fonti added. He recognised the presence of its partners, namely: Africell, GTB, UTB, Sierra Palms and Suzuki/Shalimar.
Whilst officially launching the AYV Miss University Beauty Pageant 2018 and the AYV Charity Foundation, Stella Bangura, AYV’s Digital and Brand Manager, stressed that the purpose of this event is to empower and showcase women of Sierra Leone. This year’s event will be one with a difference as it will include creating a platform for the winner to actively participate in social work through the Charity Foundation also launched.
“The winner of this contest will sell the nation to the outside world and put Sierra Leone on the international stage, ”she stated adding how the event will not only be concerned with displaying the beauty of females but will help boost the tourism industry, which is now part of the government’s agenda in diversification for revenue generation. It will further attract tourists to the country, she maintained.
The winner, she maintained, will have to compete with other 53 Miss University beauty queens in the world on the international stage.
This year’s show is one with a purpose; the winner will not be like previous winners, who after the contest have nothing else to do, but this year’s winner will have to work with the AYV Charity Foundation and be meaningfully engaged in community service. She will be engaged in something that she loves and is passionate about.
“Whoever wins the AYV Miss University 2018 will have a pet project. She is going to have a course that she is going to be championing” she maintained. The winner in this year’s competition will get a brand new car and Le12 million, plus 1 year charity work with the AYV Charity Foundation; She will also be a brand ambassador for a reputable company in the country. The event will also serve as a platform to launch her career and 12 months wardrobe.
The first runner-up will get Le6 million and will step in the shoes of the queen in the event of her incapacity to carry out her duties due to circumstances beyond her control. The 2nd Runner-up will get Le 3 million and will also be a stand-by, in case both the 1st and 2nd winners are unable to perform their duties for some unforeseen reasons.
Stella Bangura stressed that the contest will not only focus on just the appearance of the contestants but will be looking for their capacity to impress and represent Sierra Leone in all spheres.
She should be able to carry out advocacy work as she will be working with the AYV Charity Foundation. She should be able to articulate the issues facing the country and be abreast with international issues. In other words she should be able to represent the nation well in the international arena. The event will take place on the 22nd of December at the Family Kingdom in the presence of competent judges.
Deputy Managing Director of AYV, Brigitte Dalton - Sesay said this year they are going to change the narrative of beauty pageant. She praised the CEO of AYV, Anthony Navo Jr. for being a true philanthropist, disclosing that he is always thinking out of the box to enhance national development. She said this year it will be “Beauty with a Purpose”.
Abdul Aziz representing Africell pointed out that they now count themself as a partner of AYV and not as a sponsor, adding that this year’s Miss University is going to be bigger and better. He admonished the participants not to shy away.
AYV’s Managing Director Dr. Duramani Lakkoh, said that this year they are going to expose education through beauty and beauty through education. He recognised the presence of its partners and called on others including viewers watching in their homes to come on board and support the project and empower women for the development of education and the nation as a whole through beauty.
Sheriff of Sierra Palms underscored that AYV is rebranding Sierra Leone and they are willing to be part of making the country go more international.
Prior to the official launching those who were interviewed, including journalists, about their expectations of the launching ceremony, expressed the view that they are anticipating it to be very impressive.